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U.K. Companies Get $3 Million in Quest for Cheaper Hydrogen Car

Aug. 3 (Bloomberg) -- ITM Power Plc, a hydrogen energy system maker, and low-cost fuel-cell developer ACAL Energy Ltd. will get 1.95 million pounds ($3 million) from the U.K.’s Carbon Trust to build cheaper hydrogen-powered vehicle engines.

The funding brings the Carbon Trust’s total investment in the two companies to 3.6 million pounds, a statement from the London-based not-for-dividend green investor shows.

Hydrogen cars currently under development are prohibitively expensive to run, at around $50 a kilowatt, according to Carbon Trust estimates. To compete with traditional engines, costs need to fall below $37 a kilowatt, it said.

ACAL Energy, based in Runcorn, England, has the ability to make a fuel cell which operates for $35 a kilowatt, while Sheffield, England-based ITM Power can reduce the size and weight of cells without decreasing power, the Carbon Trust said in its July 31 statement.

The global hydrogen vehicle industry could be worth 180 billion pounds by 2050, the Trust said, with the first mass-produced cars appearing in 2015.

To contact the reporter on this story: Josephine Forster in London at jforster13@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reed Landberg at landberg@bloomberg.net

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